Reports from Gombe say Nigerian military has successfully repelled attempts by suspected Islamist Boko Haram Sect from taking over the city this Saturday.
Eyewitnesses say the insurgents attacked the city early morning having successfully conquered Dadin Kowa town, some 40 Km east of Gombe metropolis and surrounding villages.
Residents of BCGA and Yelenguruza neighbourhood in Gombe say there were sound of bombs and artillery guns in the early hours of Saturday extending till noon.
Military fighter jets were also seen carrying out attacks in areas where the insurgent were said to occupy.
A resident of Hina village, 20 Km along Gombe – Dadin Kowa road, Gambo Bright said there was mass movement by people of the village running in different directions, some towards Gombe, while others towards the popular Bima Hills.
He said “the sound of heavy gunshot by members of the sect woke us up and we had to run for our lives. If you hear the sound of their guns you will know that we are only risking the lives of our soldiers in fighting against this people – you can’t compare what our soldiers have with what these people are firing.
“I ran through the bush on my motorcycle, not knowing the direction I was taking, and somehow, miraculously I found myself in Deba – the Local Government Headquarters.
A resident of Gombe Hassan Shuaibu says the insurgents entered the town through different routes – wide apart and carried out their attacks.
Another resident said “it appeared the military had intelligent report on the attack and therefore stationed their men along Bajoga Road, on the northern axis of Gombe metropolis – only for them to be taken unaware by the insurgents through the eastern axis.
We hear they had their way despite the few soldiers that confronted them around Hina Junction outskirts of Gombe.”
According to him places attacked in Gombe metropolis include the Police Station in Dadin Kowa Park, the State Police Criminal Investigation Department, and the Army Quarter Guard. The Police Public Relations Officer, Fwaje Attajiri’s phone number was not reachable to confirm the information.
A Gombe based Journalists, who chose to remain anonymous for security reasons told AFRICA PRIME NEWS that “everywhere is calm now now, but there is a 24 hour curfew in place which restricts people from moving.”
About five suicide attacks had been carried out in Gombe this year – the last – two weeks ago, shortly after the re-election rally of President Goodluck Jonathan in Gombe township stadium.
Last year attacks were made by the Islamist insurgents on Nafada, Bajoga and Ashaka towns, but in each case, they were overpowered by the Nigerian military.